David Jenny, a bail enforcement agent (a.k.a. bounty hunter) with Freedom Bail Bonding, stakes out a house in Fairfax in search of a  "skip."

David Jenny, a bail enforcement agent (a.k.a. bounty hunter) with Freedom Bail Bonding, stakes out a house in Fairfax in search of a "skip."

Hector Emanuel-for The Washington Post

Freedom Bail Bonding's  Jenny, left,  and his bounty hunting partner Elmer Mata, right. At center is Dave Gambale, a former Marine who started  Freedom Bail Bonding about a dozen years ago.

Freedom Bail Bonding's Jenny, left, and his bounty hunting partner Elmer Mata, right. At center is Dave Gambale, a former Marine who started Freedom Bail Bonding about a dozen years ago.

Hector Emanuel-for The Washington Post

An office wall at Freedom Bail Bonding holds photos of skips. "This is what I tell everybody: 'We're gonna look for you harder than the cops will,' " Jenny says. "When there's money involved, you're gonna get found."

An office wall at Freedom Bail Bonding holds photos of skips. "This is what I tell everybody: 'We're gonna look for you harder than the cops will,' " Jenny says. "When there's money involved, you're gonna get found."

Hector Emanuel-for The Washington Post

Mata, in foreground, and Jenny in their office at Freedom Bail Bonding. Jenny says a laptop computer is a more indispensable weapon than a gun.

Mata, in foreground, and Jenny in their office at Freedom Bail Bonding. Jenny says a laptop computer is a more indispensable weapon than a gun.

Hector Emanuel-for The Washington Post

Jenny questions a man during a late-night search for a skip at a home in Silver Spring. Searches can drag on for months.  "It's like you're starstruck,"  Jenny says. "You stare at their picture for six or nine months. When I finally catch them, I want to get their autograph or something."

Jenny questions a man during a late-night search for a skip at a home in Silver Spring. Searches can drag on for months. "It's like you're starstruck," Jenny says. "You stare at their picture for six or nine months. When I finally catch them, I want to get their autograph or something."

Hector Emanuel-for The Washington Post

Jenny and Mata listen before knocking on the door of a possible hideout of a skip in Alexandria.

Jenny and Mata listen before knocking on the door of a possible hideout of a skip in Alexandria.

Hector Emanuel-For The Washington Post

Jenny on the hunt in the middle of the night.

Jenny on the hunt in the middle of the night.

Hector Emanuel-for The Washington Post